As shoppers become more conscious of their spending habits, the demand on retailers to ensure the best possible service is being provided by store or restaurant employees has increased exponentially. Mystery shopping will provide you the real time data to know your service is not just talk but in fact an embedded component of your service delivery. Here are 5 reasons to consider implementing a cost-effective and objective mystery shop program within your stores:
1. You cannot improve what you do not measure
What do your customers think about your business? How would they describe your stores, your staff, and your service to friends? In the ongoing journey to achieve service excellence leading to new customers, repeat sales and positive customer comments, how do your stores measure up? Regular mystery shopping of each location will tell you exactly how each employee at each store is interacting with customers. Store managers will not want to be last in the chain rankings and will lean into ensuring each employee is responding to customers in a professional, empathetic way.
2. Enhance the overall customer experience
Customers expect brands to provide a seamless and quality experience across all touch points between store associates and its customers. By using mystery shoppers to assess the in-store experience and level of customer service, you will identify and target improvement opportunities for meaningful employee training in addition to rewarding associates who perform exceptionally. The benefit to your customers? Enhancing their overall customer experience, translating to increased customer loyalty and sales. When customers have an excellent pleasant experience, they are far more likely to return to your store and recommend your brand to others.
3. Boost employee engagement and retention
Employees want to be appreciated for their efforts. With the rise of the gig economy, it is critical to create a positive and engaging work environment that attracts and retains talent. Mystery shopping can help you understand your employees’ strengths and areas for development. The employee benefits are many. Empowered employees will want to perform, be recognized, and be rewarded by management as an integral part of the team. A monthly award should be created by management offering peer recognition and perhaps a small gift such as a gift card or time off.
4. Test the efficacy of your marketing efforts
The effectiveness of your marketing campaigns rests with your front-line employees who must know and sell the benefits of the campaign to in-store shoppers. Perhaps it’s a BOGO or a buy one-half off a second item. It is imperative the employees understand each marketing campaign and further reinforce that campaign to your in-store customers. By sending mystery shoppers to your store locations, they will report upon the effectiveness of the campaign’s message as heard (or not) from the store associate.
5. Additional benefits of a well-thought shopper program
Knowledge is power. The following list is gold to a motivated management team:
- Staff Appearance, Availability, Friendliness
- Associate Availability
- Wait Times
- Willingness to Assist
- Up-selling / Add on Sales
- Product Knowledge
- Sales Skills
- Overcoming Objections
- Ability to Close the Sale
- Cash Wrap
- Physical Plant Readiness
Don’t leave your profits and reputation to chance. The greater your knowledge of your associate’s customer engagements, the greater your opportunity to achieve increased customer loyalty and increased profits. Retail, restaurants, and hospitality companies will significantly benefit from becoming mystery shopping clients. Let Service Performance Group be your partner. We will provide you with:
- Tailored formats designed to meet your needs
- Factual, Objective Feedback
- Actionable Data
- Timely Deliverables
- Summary Reporting